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Apple iPad Pro With M2 Chip: Five Things To Know

Shane Snider

The Cupertino, Calif.-based tech powerhouse launches a top-of-line tablet and a redesigned regular iPad to round out its mobile offerings.

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Apple Inc. today announced the new iPad Pro with the M2 chip, which the company said delivers the ultimate combination of portability, versatility, and performance.

The announcement comes on the cusp of an important holiday season, which may see fewer than expected sales in the mobile sector. Apple and other tech companies are betting on the sales strength of higher-end products to pull them through a tough period.

“The next-generation iPad Pro pushes the boundaries of what’s possible on iPad, brining even more versatility, power, and portability to the ultimate iPad experience,” Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing, said in a statement. “Powered by the M2 chip, the new iPad Pro features incredible performance and the most advanced technologies, including a next-level Apple Pencil hover experience, Pro Res video capture, superfast wireless connectivity, and p0owerful iPad OS features. There’s nothing else like it.”

[RELATED: Apple Nixes Plan For China’s YMTC Chips In iPhones]

Apple also announced a redesigned iPad featuring a large 10.9-inch liquid retina display and powered by the A14 Bionic chip. The new iPad has updated cameras that include an Ultra Wide 12MP front camera “located along the landscape edge of iPad for an even better video calling experience, and an updated 12MP back camera to capture sharp, vivid photos and 4K video.”

Jason Dettbarn, founder and CEO of Miami-based Addigy, was impressed by the new iPad’s features but he’s really interested in what the release says about Apple’s future offerings.

“Among all the individual advancements in this iPad release—the M2 processor, proper keyboard, proper work camera, trackpad cursor, or even new app window management—we have to look at the long-term product road map of products at Apple. The iPad/iPad Pro is continuously evolving from the initial portable internet in your hands … to a true workhorse productivity device in the workforce,” Dettbarn said in an email to CRN.

CRN breaks down five important features of the new iPad Pro.

M2 Chip Advancements

Apple’s next generation in the M-series of chips offers power efficiency, a unified memory architecture, and custom technologies featuring an 8-core CPU that is up to 150 percent faster than the M1 chip. The 10-core GPU lelivers up to 35 percent faster graphics performance, Apple said. Combined with the CPU and GPU, the 16-core Neural Engine can process 15.8 trillion operations per second – 40 percent more than M1. Apple says the M2 chip also provides 100 gigabytes per second of unified memory bandwidth, besting M1 by 50 percent. The chip supports up to 16 gigabytes of unified memory to make multitasking and working with large assets easier.

A New Apple Pencil Hover Experience

Using iPadOS 16, the second-generation Apple Pencil’s hover provides a new dimension for users to interact with their screen, the company said. Apple Pencil is now detected up to 12 mm above the display to allow users to sneak a peek at their mark before touch the screen. This lets users sketch and illustrate with more precision, the company said. With Scribble, text fields automatically expand when the pencil approaches the screen. Handwriting converts to text at greater speeds.

Faster Wireless Connectivity

The new iPad Pro supports Wi-Fi 6E with the fastest Wi-Fi connections currently available. Downloads are up to 2.4 GB/s, two times faster than the previous generation. Wi-Fi and cellular models with 5G (sub-6GHz and mmWave4) support more 5G networks around the world.

iPad And Sustainability

Apple said the new iPad models are designed to minimize their impact on the environment and include 100 percent recycled gold – which is a first for iPad – in the plating of its multiple printed circuit boards. The tablets also include recycled aluminum, tin, and rare earth elements. Redesigned packaging in the new iPad Pro eliminates the outer plastic wrap, and 99 percent of the packaging is fiber-based, bringing Apple closer to its goal of removing plastic from all packaging by 2025.

 Pricing And Availability

The new iPad Pro is available to order beginning today at the Apple Store and in the Apple Store app with availability in stores beginning on Oct. 26. The new 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro will be available in silver and space gray finishes with 128 GB, 256GB, 512 GB, 1TB and 2 TB configurations available beginning at a price of $733 for the 11-inch Wi-Fi model. The 12.9-inch iPad Pro starts at $1,099 for the Wi-Fi model. The second-generation Apple Pencil is sold separately for $129.

Shane Snider

Shane Snider is a senior associate editor covering personal computing, mobile devices, semiconductor news, hardware reviews, breaking news and live events. Shane is a veteran journalist, having worked for newspapers in upstate New York and North Carolina. He can be reached at ssnider@thechannelcompany.com.

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